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DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)

DigiTrad:
MOLLY BAWN (POLLY VAUGHN 2)
POLLY VAUGHN


Related threads:
polly vaughan (36)
Lyr Req/Add: Molly Bawn / Boating on Lough Ree (38)
polly vaughan dick miles (49) (closed)
Lyr Add: Noreen Bawn (Neil MacBride?) (15)
(origins) Origins: Molly/Maureen Bawn (21)
Chords - Polly Von (17)
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Molly Bawn/Polly Vaughn.. How many do you know? (31)
Lyr Req: Polly Von (8)


Richie 22 May 16 - 11:24 PM
Joe Offer 23 May 16 - 12:00 AM
Richie 23 May 16 - 01:30 PM
Richie 23 May 16 - 01:55 PM
Steve Gardham 23 May 16 - 03:27 PM
Richie 23 May 16 - 03:32 PM
Richie 23 May 16 - 03:55 PM
Richie 23 May 16 - 04:11 PM
Richard Mellish 23 May 16 - 05:26 PM
Steve Gardham 23 May 16 - 05:56 PM
Richie 23 May 16 - 06:42 PM
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Subject: Origins: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn): A Study
From: Richie
Date: 22 May 16 - 11:24 PM

This is an edited DTStudy thread, and all messages posted here are subject to editing and deletion.
This thread is intended to serve as a forum for corrections and annotations for the Digital Tradition song named in the title of this thread.

Search for other DTStudy threads


Hi,

This is a thread for a study of the ballad Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn) as suggested by Steve Gardham and Brian Peters. There are already some threads with information.

Here's the Pitts broadside:

Molly Whan.

Printed and sold by J. Pitts 14 Great st. Andrew street 7 Dials

A story, a story, to you I'll relate,
Of a loving young damsel a Maying she went,
As she was a Maying a shower it began,
she went under the green bush the shower to shun,

As Jemmy was fowling with his dog and his gun.
He to his great grief shot his dear Molly Whan.
And when he came to her and found it was she,
His limbs they did tremble his eyes could scarce see

Then home to his father away he did run,
saying father dear father great harm have I done
I've shot the fairest creature that ever was known,
I have shot my true love my dear Molly Whan.

His father came running with hair handing grey,
Saying Jemmy love, Jemmy love don't run away
Stay in your own country 'till trial come on,
I'll warrant you'll be righted by the laws of the land

In two or three nights after the lady did appear,
saying uncle loveing uncle pray let my love clear
For my apron hung round me took me for a swan
But to his great grief shot his dear Molly Whan

set them up all together stand them all in a row,
Molly Whan was the fairest like mountain of snow,
Curse light upon Toby who lent me his gun,
Which to my great grief shot my dear Molly Whan.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 23 May 16 - 12:00 AM

the Traditional Ballad Index has an extensive entry:

Molly Bawn (Shooting of His Dear) [Laws O36]

DESCRIPTION: Jimmy goes out hunting and shoots his true love (Molly, mistaking her for a swan). He is afraid of the law, but is told that the law will forgive him. At his trial Molly's ghost appears and explains the situation; the young man is freed
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1806 (Jamieson, volume i, p. 194 -- a partial text in the notes to "Lord Kenneth and Fair Ellinour)
KEYWORDS: hunting death trial reprieve help ghost
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MA,MW,NE,SE,So) Britain(England) Ireland Canada(Mar,Newf)
REFERENCES (36 citations):
Laws O36, "Molly Bawn (Shooting of His Dear)"
Randolph 54, "Molly Vaughn" (3 texts plus 2 fragments and 1 excerpt, 1 tune)
Eddy 77, "Mollie Vaughn (Polly Band)" (1 text)
Gardner/Chickering 14, "Molly Baun" (2 texts, 1 tune)
Linscott, pp. 274-276, "Polly Van" (1 text, 1 tune)
Karpeles-Newfoundland 26, "Shooting of His Dear" (1 text, 1 tune)
Creighton-Maritime, p. 111, "As Jimmie Went A-Hunting" (1 text, 1 tune)
BrownII 76, "Molly Bawn" (1 text plus a fragment)
BrownSchinhanIV 76, "Molly Bawn" (3 excerpts, 3 tunes)
Morris, #214, "Molly Baun" (3 texts, 1 tune)
Scarborough-SongCatcher, p. 117, "Molly Vaughn" (1 text, properly titled "The Death of Molly Bender," with very peculiar orthography; it looks like it came from a semi-literate manuscript but is said to be from a field recording)
Chappell-FSRA 57, "Polly Bond" (1 fragment)
SharpAp 50, "Shooting of His Dear" (6 texts, 6 tunes)
Hudson 32, pp. 145-146, "Shooting of His Dear" (2 texts)
Moore-Southwest 73, "Molly Bond" (1 text, 1 tune)
Boswell/Wolfe 24, pp. 44-46, "Molly Bond" (1 text, 1 tune)
Leach, pp. 700-701, "Molly Bawn" (1 text)
Leach-Heritage, pp. 176-177, "Molly Bawn" (1 text)
Korson-PennLegends, pp. 46-47, "Molly Banding" (1 text, 1 tune)
Friedman, p. 26, "Molly Bawn" (1 text)
PBB 92, "Young Molly Ban" (1 text)
McNeil-SFB1, pp. 96-97, "Molly Van" (1 text, 1 tune)
Meredith/Anderson, p. 196, "Molly Baun Lavery" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hodgart, p. 206, "Young Molly Ban" (1 text)
Graham/Holmes 49, "Molly Ban Lavery" (1 text, 1 tune)
SHenry H114, p. 143, "Molly Bawn Lowry" (1 text, 1 tune)
OLochlainn 29, "Young Molly Ban" (1 text, 1 tune)
Morton-Maguire 1, pp. 1-2,99,154-155, "Molly Bawn Lowry" (1 text, 1 tune)
OCroinin-Cronin 92, "Molly Bawn" (3 texts, 1 tune)
Kennedy 330, "Polly Vaughan" (2 text, 1 tune)
JHCox 102, "Mollie Vaughn" (3 texts, 1 tune)
LPound-ABS, 33, pp. 78-79, "Mollie Bond" (1 text)
WolfAmericanSongSheets, #1896, p. 128, "Polly von Luther and Jamie Randall" (1 reference)
Darling-NAS, pp. 133-134, "Molly Bawn"; "Molly Bander" (2 texts)
DT 308, POLLYVON POLLVON1 POLLVON2
ADDITIONAL: Kathleen Hoagland, editor, One Thousand Years of Irish Poetry (New York, 1947), p. 304, "Young Molly Bawn" (1 short text)

Roud #166
RECORDINGS:
Louis Boutilier, "As Jimmie Went A-Hunting" (on MRHCreighton)
Anne Briggs, "Polly Vaughan" (on Briggs1, Briggs3)
Packie Manus Byrne, "Molly Bawn" (on Voice06)
Sara Cleveland, "Molly Bawn" (on SCleveland01)
Elizabeth Cronin, "Molly Bawn" (on IRECronin01)
Seamus Ennis, "Molly Bawn" (on Lomax42, LomaxCD1742)
A. L. Lloyd, "Polly Vaughan" (on Lomax41, LomaxCD1741)
John Maguire, "Molly Bawn Lowry" (on IRJMaguire01)
Maggie Murphy, "Molly Bawn" (on IRHardySons)
Pete Seeger, "Shoo Fly" (on PeteSeeger33, PeteSeegerCD03)
Phoebe Smith, "Molly Vaughan" (on Voice03)

BROADSIDES:
Bodleian, Harding B 19(11), "Young Molly Bawn," J.F. Nugent & Co. (Dublin), 1850-1899; also 2806 b.11(131), "Young Molly Bawn"
LOCSinging, as111140, "Polly Von Luther and Jamie Randall," J. Andrews (New York), 1853-1859

ALTERNATE TITLES:
Molly Ban
Peggy Baun
Lord Kenneth and Fair Ellinour
NOTES: Darling compares this to the story of Cephalus and Procris. The standard version is supplied by Ovid in the Metamorphoses (VII.685 and following; it starts on page 174 of the Penguin edition translated by Mary M. Innes). First he tested her love in disguise, and she passed the test. But then she heard a rumor of his unfaithfulness, and set out to watch him. He heard her in hiding, without seeing her, and threw his javelin on the assumption that she was a wild beast. It killed her.
Incidentally, Michael Grant and John Hazel, Gods and Mortals in Classical Mythology: A Dictionary, article on Cephalus, thinks Ovid's version of the story may conflate legends of two different heroes named Cephalus. In any case, I don't see a particularly strong parallel to the ballad; yes, the hunter kills his lover, but the motivations are very different. - RBW
Broadside LOCSinging as111140: J. Andrews dating per Studying Nineteenth-Century Popular Song by Paul Charosh in American Music, Winter 1997, Vol 15.4, Table 1, available at FindArticles site. - BS
Last updated in version 3.7
File: LO36

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The Ballad Index Copyright 2015 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


The Digital Tradition has 2 versions I can find:

POLLY VAUGHN

Dm Gm
I shall tell of a hunter whose life was undone
Dm A
By the cruel hand of evil at the setting of the sun
Dm Gm
His arrow was loosed and it flew thru the dark
Dm Dm7 A7 Dm G Dm G Dm
And his true love was slain as the shaft found its mark

F
For she'd her apron wrapped around her
A
and he took her for a swan
Dm G7 A7 Dm G Dm
and it's o and alas, it was she, Polly Vaughn

He ran up beside her and found it was she
He turned away his head for he could not bear to see
He lifted her up and found she was dead
A fountain of tears for his true love he shed

He bore her away to his home by the sea
Crying Father, o Father, I've murdered poor Polly
I've killed my fair love in the flower of her life
I'd always intended that she'd be my wife

He roamed near the place where his true love was slain
He wept bitter tears, but his tears were all in vain
As he looked on the lake, a swan glided by
And the sun slowly sank in the grey of the sky

@hunt @love @death @law
DT #308
Laws O36
This version is based on "Polly Von" arranged by Peter, Paul and Mary, 1963
as recorded by Frankie Armstrong on Here's a Health
John and Tony Dark Ships
Tony Rose Green Willow
filename[ POLLYVON
SOF

MOLLY BAWN (POLLY VAUGHN 2)

Come all ye brave heroes who handle a gun
Beware of night ramblin' by the setting of the sun.

And be aware of an accident that happened of late
To young Molly Bawn and sad was her fate.

She was going to her uncle's when a shower came on
She went 'neath a green bush the shower to shun.

With her apron 'round her he took her for a swan
It's a sob and a sigh it was Oh! Oh! Molly Bawn.

He quickly ran to her and saw that she was dead
And it's many's a salt tear on her bosom he shed

He went home to his father with his gun in his hand
Crying father, dear father, I have shot Molly Bawn.
I have shot that young colleen I have taken the life
Of the one I intended to take for my wife.

Oh Johnny, young Johnny, do not run away
Don't you leave your own country till your trial day.

Don't you leave your own country till your trial comes on
For you'll never be convicted for the loss of a swan.

The night before Molly's funeral her ghost it did appear
Saying mother, dear mother, young Johnny he's clear.

I was going to my uncle when a shower came on
But tell him he's forgiven by his own Molly Bawn.

The girls in this country they are all very glad
Since the pride of Glen Allen, Molly Bawn is now dead.

The girls in this country stand them all in a row
Molly Bawn would shine above them like a mountain of snow.

From the singing of Norman Kennedy
DT #308
Laws O36
@love @murder @ghost @bird
filename[ POLLVON2
TUNE FILE: POLLVON2
CLICK TO PLAY
SOF


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 01:30 PM

TY Joe,

I'll post Jamieson's version from 1806 that was included in Child's 1857 collection but not his Englsih and Scottish Popular Ballads apparently because of Jamieson's remarks about the ballad. If Steve or Brain could list some of the early brodasies and help answer a few of these questions (following) it would be gr8.

For now I'll pose some questions:

1) Is this shooting based on a real-life event? What could it be?

2) When could the event have taken place? What's the approximate date?

3) Does Jamieson's encounter with the ballad pre-date any print versions?

4) What are some analogues? Is she turn a swan in any of them? A fawn?

5) Is this of Irish origin? Why?

6) Fawn or swan- why are they different? When did fawn become substituted? Do fowlers normally shoot swans?

7) Why does she return after death?

8) What is the oldest print version? Collected version?

9) Are the Newfoundland version titled Molly Bawn, that don't have the shooting still part of this ballad or should they be an appendix or a separate ballad?

10) Is the tune's date the date for the text? Is O'Caroline's "Fair-haired Mary" part of the tune family?

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 01:55 PM

Hi,

Here are the two ballads from Jamieson:

From: Popular Ballads and Songs: From Tradition, Manuscripts and Scarce editions, Volume 1 edited by Robert Jamieson, 1806

LORD KENNETH

FAIR ELLINOUR.

In August, 1799, the editor, to save the trouble of transcribing, and, at the same time, shew a few of his literary correspondents how he was employing his leisure hours, got a few copies of this little piece printed along with "Donul and Evir," on a sheet of letter-paper, for the convenience of being sent by the post. To that copy was prefixed this short notice: "The author remembers having, when a child, heard a silly ditty of a young man, who, returning homeward from shooting with his gun, saw his sweetheart, and shot her for a swan. This is all he remembers of this piece, of which he has not been able to procure a copy." A considerable time after, he was favoured with the rude original of "Peggy Baun," (i. e. fair-haired Peggy) by his much-valued friend, professor Scott, of King's College, Aberdeen, to whose zeal, industry, and politeness, he owes, either directly or indirectly, the greater part of the best traditionary ballads in this collection. It was taken from the recitation of one of his maidservants; and, indeed, it is fit only for the nursery. In it, the unlucky sportsman runs home to his father, and tells him what he has done, and that he will" run his country."

Out spuk his old father,
(His head it was grey)
"O, keep your am country,
My son," he did say.

"O, keep your ain country
Let your trial come on, &c.
       * * * *

She appeared to her uncle,
And to him said she,
"O uncle, dear uncle,
Jamie Warick is free.

"Ye'll neither hang him nor head him,
Nor do him any wrong;
Be kind to my darling.
Now since I am gone.

"For once as I was walking,
It fell a shower of rain;
I went under the hedging,
The rain for to shun.

"As he was a-hunting,
With his dog and his gun,
By my white apron,
He took me for a swan."

This seems to be one of the very lowest description of vulgar modern English ballads, which are sung about the streets in country towns, and sold, four or five for a half penny, to maid-servants and children; and I owe an apology to my readers for attempting to introduce such paltry stuff to their notice; but one of my classical friends, on reading " Lord Kenneth," asked me whether I had not Ovid's beautiful and romantic story of Procris and Aura in my eye, when I wrote it. Had that been the case, I ought certainly to have made something better of it than I have done; but I most assuredly thought as little of Procris and Aura, when I was writing " Lord Kenneth," as did the great author of " Peggy Baun." A lover killing his mistress, a grey-headed old father, and a ghost, seemed very fine things to a child of five or six years old; and I remembered the story long after I had forgot the terms in which it was conveyed.

LORD KENNETH AND FAIR ELLINOUR.

Lord Kenneth, in a gay mornin',
Pat on the goud and green;
And never had a comlier youth
Don, Spey, or Lossie seen.

He's greathit him fu' gallantlie,
Wi' a' his tackle yare;
Syne, like a baron bauld and free,
To gude green wood can fare.

The rae-buck startit frae his lair
The girsie hows amang;
But ne'er his sleekie marrow fand,
An Kenneth's bow mat twang.

Frae out the haslie holt the deer
Sprang glancing thro' the schaw;
But little did their light feet boot,
An he his bow mat draw.

The caiper-caillie and tarmachin
Craw'd crouse on hill and muir;
But mony a gorie wing or e'en
Shaw'd Kenneth's flane was sure.

He shot them east, he shot them west,
The black cock and the brown;
He shot them on hill, moss, and muir,
Till the sun was gangin' down.

He shot them up, he shot them down,
The deer but and the rae;
And he has scour'd the gude green wood
Till to-fall o' the day.

The quarry till his menyie he
Has gie'n herewith to bear;
Syne, lanelie by the lover's lamp,
Thro' frith and fell can fare.

And blythe he fare, and merrilie;
I wate he thocht na lang,
While o' his winsome Ellinour
With lightsome heart he sang.

And weel he mat, for Ellinour
Had set the bride-ale day;
And Ellinour had ne'er a feer
In Bad'nach or Strathspey.

And as he near'd her bigly bower,
The fainer ay he grew;
The primrose bank, the burn, the bield,
Whare they had been to view.

And he had passed the birken heugh,
And dipt and kist the tree,
That heard the blushing Ellinour
Consent his bride to be.

And now he raught the glassie lin,
And thro' the saughs sae grey;
He saw what kidied a milk-white swan,
That there did sport and play.

Fair swelled her bosom o'er the broo,
As driven snaw to see;—
He shot—o'er true to Kenneth's hand,
The deadly flane did flee!

A shriek he heard; and swithe a graen
Sank gugglin in the wave!
Aghast, he ran, he sprang, he wist
Nor what nor wha to save!

But oh! the teen o' Kenneth's heart,
What tongue can mind to tell?
He drew the dead corse to the strand;
Twas Ellinour hersell!

I assume the second version was written by Jamieson based on the short first traditional version. How did Jamieson come up with the names Kenneth and Ellinour? Are they traditional? What significance is the name Jamie Warick in the traditional version?

Can we assume since Jamieson heard the traditional version when he was a child that it would date to circa 1755? Who is Robert Jamieson the the younger? Who is professor Scott, of King's College?

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 16 - 03:27 PM

Kenneth is a traditional Scots name. I believe there was a King Kenneth in medieval times. Eleanor is more of a Norman name, as in Lord Thomas and Fair Eleanor, Queen Eleanor's Confession. Professor Scott who sent him the trad version from his maidservant, will no doubt be found by Googling. As you know there are several Scotts involved in ballad collecting/editing. It would put the ballad back to the middle of the 18thc at least if what Jamieson says is right, but we already had a good idea it was at least that old anyway. Don't know anything of an RJ jr.

Jamie Warwick. In a foreign country names are easily transposed. Jamie seems to be a common occurrence in the ballad, albeit Jamie Randall.

Just for the record, I quite like Jamieson's ballad. Unfortunately the penultimate stanza looks like something out one of Sam Cowell's burlesques.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 03:32 PM

She appears as a "fawn" in the 1857 parody "Molly Von Luther":

"My apron being around me, he took me for a fawn,
But oh, and alas! it was I, Polly Von."

What is the earliest version with "fawn"?

Does anyone have a copy or translation of C. Robert's early version of the myth of Cephalus and Procris where they are hunting in the woods (not Ovid's version)?

Has anyone done ant research or have information on the theriomorphic soul regarding the Irish belief that birds flying at night are souls in animal form? An example is found in "Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland" (1920):

"There was a man used to go out fowling, and one day his sister said to him, "Whatever you do don't go out tonight and don't shoot any wild duck or any birds you see flying— for tonight they are all poor souls travelling."

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 03:55 PM

An early story of the myth of Cephalus and Procris is told here (in German): Griechische mythologie by Ludwig Preller, 1809-1861; Carl Robert, 1850-1922, ed; Kern, Otto, b. 1863, ed. Published 1894. Here's a link:

https://archive.org/details/griechischemyth01prelgoog

In this version the Cephalus and Procris are hunting in the woods- but neither are aware that the other is hunting--Procris beats the bushes trying to scare game into the open and Cephalus throws his spear (javelin/dart) towards the noise and and kills her.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 04:11 PM

Hi,

Does anyone know if Bob Dylan took his version from Paul Clayton's "Polly Van" (Bay State Ballads FW02106 / FA 2106)? Where did Clayton get his version? (text below)

All ye brave huntsmen who follow the gun,
Beware of a shooting at the setting of the sun,
For her true love went a-hunting and he shot in the dark,
But, oh, and alas, Polly Van was his mark.

Refrain: For she'd her apron wrapped about her and he took her for a swan,
But, oh, and alas, it was she, Polly Van.

He run up beside her when he found it was she,
His legs they grew weak, his eyes scarce could see,
He embraced her in his arms when he found she was dead,
And a fountain of tears for his true love he shed.

Refrain:

He took her in his arms and home ran he,
Crying '·Father, dear father, I've shot fair Polly;
I've shot that fair female in the bloom of her life,
And I always intended to make her my wife."

Refrain:

At midnight in his chamber Polly Van did appear,
Crying "Jimmy, dear Jimmy, you have nothing to fear,
But stay in your country till your trial comes on,
And you shall not be convicted for what you have done."

Refrain:

In the midst of his trial Polly Van did appear,
Crying, "Uncle, dear uncle, Jimmy Randall must be clear."
The judges and lawyers stood around in a row,
Polly Van in the middle like a fountain of snow.

Refrain:

[Richie]


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 23 May 16 - 05:26 PM

This was one of the subjects at one of Bob Askew's ballad chats at C# House. This bit from the notes that Bob circulated seems worth quoting here.

"It seems to be based on a true event. Joyce said that it was very popular in mid and southern Ireland in the 19th century. He noted the earliest version in Ireland and felt that it was based on a true event: 'it obviously commemorates a tragedy in real life'. An article in Ulster Folklife 1845 quoted a manuscript from Kilwarlin, Co Down, which named James Reynolds and Molly Bann Lavery, born in Lisburn, and educated in Lurgan. The surnames were local, the Laverys were Catholics and the Reynolds Protestants. No archival evidence has yet been found to prove this, but it is likely that it could turn up."

Anyway I think we can discount the theory that the story derives from an ancient belief in swan maidens. The point was made at the ballad chat that accidental shootings are common enough. (Not however to quite the extent satirised by Tom Lehrer.)

I don't understand the mutation rules in Gaelic, but I do know that when "b" changes to "bh" it is sometimes pronounced like "v" (hence Polly Vaughn/Vaughan) but it can also become like "w", which seems a likely explanation for the "Whan" spelling in one of the broadsides.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 23 May 16 - 05:56 PM

I've always put the swan /fawn error down to the song s being a confusion. If someone unfamiliar with the long s saw fawn on a ballad sheet they might interpret it as fawn.

I'm 100% with Bob. We seem to be faced with the same arguments we had with Gosport Tragedy, a real event with added supernatural elements.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 06:42 PM

Hi,

I'll post a couple versions from the US first. Sharp A is from Jane Hicks Gentry who learned this from her mother, Emoline (Emily) Harmon, who was Council Harmon's daughter. When his father Andrew was killed by a tree, the eight-year-old Council (born early 1800s) lived briefly with Big Sammy Hicks and his son in Watauga County, NC. I believe that Big Sammy was one of Council's main sources. Big Sammy's daughter Sabra was Council's mother.

[Polly Bam] Sharp A (No. 50, Shooting of His Dear) Sung by Mrs. JANE GENTRY at Hot Springs, N. C, Aug. 25, 1916.

1. Jimmy Dannels[1] went a hunting
Between sun set and dark.
Her white apron over her shoulder,
He took her for a swan.

2 He throwed down his gun
And to her he run.
He hugged her, he kissed her
Till he found she was dead.

3 Then dropping her down
To his uncle he run.
Good woe and good lasses[2],
I've killed poor Polly Bam.

4 O uncle, O uncle, what shall I do?
For woe and good lasses,
I've killed poor Polly Bam.
Her white apron over her shoulder.
But woe and good lasses[2],
It was poor Polly Bam.

5 Stay in your own country
And don't run away.

6 The day before trial
The ladies all appeared in a row.
Polly Bam 'peared among them
Like a fountain of snow[3].

7 Don't hang Jimmy Dannels,
For he's not to blame.
My white apron over my shoulder
He took me for a swan;
But woe and good lasses[2],
It was me, poor Polly Bam.

1. for "Daniels"
2. derived from "But oh and alas"
3. she is a ghost at this point- see also "snow" reference in Sam Henry's Songs of the People: "Molly Bawn Lowry." The snow reference is to: her ghost; her in swan form; or simply that she shines (is more beautiful) among them like a "fountain of snow."


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 06:50 PM

Hi,

Thanks for that post Steve and Richard Mellish-- I've been wondering about her last name being attached to some versions. For example, there are at least two "Molly Bawn Lowry" versions from the UK. Very close to: Molly Bann Lavery.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 07:26 PM

Hi,

Info mainly from: Special Report on Surnames in Ireland: Together with Varieties and Synonymes by Robert E. Matheson

Moira District has these prefixes:

Baun-Lavery also Bawn-Lavery with Baun being the most common. several people are known by thir prefixes: Dan Baun. Baun-Lavery is know in other districts.

Both Lowry and Lavery names descend from O Labhradha, province of Ulster. The "ban" meaning white is "Baun."

Also Richard Mellish: Where can I find: Ulster Folklife 1845 ? And is that date correct? Is Molly Bawn found in --"Some Songs and Ballads in Use in the Province of Ulster, 1845"?

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 07:39 PM

Hi,

This excerpt from a version in Ulster Folklife - Volume 18 - Page 37
1972 which has the names and place

[6th]
The maids of this country they are all very glad
Since Molley Bann Lavery the beauty is dead,
But gather them together and put them all in a row:
She appears in the middle like a mountain of snow.

[7th]
She appeared to her uncle as it were in a dream
Saying, — Uncle, dear uncle, James Reynolds don't blame;
With my apron being about me he took me for a cran,
But oh and alas, it was I, Molley Bann!

[8th]
In Lisburn she was born and in Lurgan educated
But oh, in Kilwarlin poor Molley was defeated!
With her apron being about her she was taken for a cran,
But oh and alas, it was poor Molley Bann!

It also has the "But oh and alas" from which Gentry (see footnote 2) has distorted in her version in Appalachia.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 09:09 PM

Hi,

Sharp B was from Addy Crane and in 1932 EFSSA only the first stanza is given- the rest is from Sharp's MS. Mike Yate's wrote about Flag Pond and I'm including a bit of his article:

"Returning from Higgin's Creek on 1st September, 1916, Sharp and Karpeles called on other singers, such as twenty-one year old Mrs Addy Crane, Sylvaney Ramsey and Mr & Mrs James Gabriel Coates. Mrs Addy Crane also gave Sharp a tune for The Daemon Lover as well as tunes for Lord Thomas and Fair Ellinor, Goodbye Sweet Jane, Brisk Young Lover and Awake, Awake. She was also able to give complete versions of The Lily of the West, The Shooting of His Dear, The Rejected Lover and what seems to be a song that was unique to her, called The Discontented Husband.

On Saturday, 2nd September Sharp and Karpeles again called on Mr & Mrs Coates during the morning. It rained for most of the time. After lunch they tried to find Mrs Crane's husband, Hezekiah, a possible singer, but he was away from home.

On Sunday, 3rd September, Sharp had a lie-in, not having breakfast until 'half-an-hour later', at 7am! He spent the morning copying out song tunes before walking over to the Crane household. Sharp spells the surname as 'Crane', although most families in the area use the spelling 'Crain'. It would seem that Sharp had been told that Hezekiah sang a song which, so Sharp believed, was a version of the ballad The Wife Wrapt in Wether's Skin. Hezekiah was in when they called, but the song turned out to be 'a very moderate version of My Boy Billy!' But all was not lost, as Hezekiah also gave Sharp versions of three other songs, William Hall, The Brisk Young Lover and Awake, Awake."

B. [Mollie Van] Shooting of His Dear; Sharp MS 3356 additional text.
Sung by Mrs. ADDY CRANE at Flag Pond, Tenn., Aug. 31, 1916.

Come all you young men
Who handle a gun
Beware of your shooting
Between the moon and sun[1].

Mollie Van was a-walking
When the showers came down,
And under a beech tree
For the showers to shun.

Jimmy Ramson was a-hunting.
Was a-hunting one night.
He shot his own true love,
O he shot her for a swan.

Jimmy ran to her,
But he found she was dead.
A fountain of tears
In her bosom he shed.

I've shot that fair lady
I loved as mu life.
I always intended,
For to make her my wife.

Up stepped Jimmy's father,
With his hair turning grey,
Says: "Stay at home Jimmy
And don't run away."

Stay at home, Jimmy
Till your trial draws near,
The laws of your country,
Sure will bring you clear.

On the day of Jimmy's trial,
Molly ghost did appear,
With judges and juries
Jimmy Ransom came clear.

Go bring them all to me,
And place them in a row,
Molly Van's all amid us[2]
Like a fountain of snow.

1. original: "after the damsel. . " this line was forgotten
2. original: "Molly Van all amiddance"

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 09:27 PM

Hi,

Here's Sharp C from EFFSA. This is really 11 stanza long (double stanzas). I'm not sure where Sharp got his "Shooting of his dear title- Anyone? Is it intended to be a play on words? dear=deer.

C.[Molly Bander] Shooting of His Dear. Sung by Mr. GEORGE W. GIBSON at Oneida, Clay Co., Ky., Aug. 21, 1917
Hexatonic. Mixolydian influence.

1. Come all you young people who handle the gun,
Be a wore of those shooting between moon and sun.
I've a story to tell you that's happened of late
Concerning Molly Bander whose beauties were great.

2 Molly Bander were a-walking and a shower came on.
She stopped under a beech-tree tho' shower to shun.
Jimmy Randal were a-hunting, he were a-hunting in the dark;
He shot his own true love, and he missed not her heart.

3 And then he run to her and he found her quite dead,
And in her own bosom finding tears he had shed.
He took his gun in his hand, to his uncle did go,
Saying: Uncle, dear uncle, I've killed Molly Ban[1];
I shot her and killed her. She was the joys of my life.
I always intended for to make her my wife.

4 Up stepped his old father with his head all so grey,
Saying: Randal, Jimmy Randal, don't run away.
Stay in your own country till your trial comes on;
You shall not be hanged; I'll spend my whole farm.

5 On the day of his trial her ghost did appear,
Saying: Randal, Jimmy Randal, Jimmy Randal, go clear.
He spied my apron pinned around me, he killed me for a swan.
He shot me and killed me: My name's Molly Ban[1].

1 Some versions start the name with an "-er" attached but shorten it at the end.   

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 23 May 16 - 09:58 PM

Hi,

Since we discussed the "Molly Baun Lavery" title, I'm putting the Australian/Irish version Bob Bolton posted here so it's not lost :) Here are Bob's notes:

"This is the song as sung by Sally Sloane, born Parkes, NSW, Australia, 1894, to collector John Meredith in the 1950s. Meredith notes that it is essentially the same as ballad #29 in Irish Street Ballads; 'Young Molly Bán'. Why it is called 'Molly Baun Lavery' and not just 'Molly Baun' I do not know. Sally has passed on and I can't ask her, but I shall ask John Meredith when next I see him.

Much of Sally's repertoire was pased down from her Irish grandmother, Sarah Alexander, who came out from County Kerry, Ireland in 1838, aged 22 years."

MOLLY BAUN LAVERY (As sung by Sally Sloane) Australian version

Come all you young fellows that follows a gun,
Beware of going a-shooting by the late setting sun.
It might happen to anyone, as it happened to me,
To shoot your own true love in under a tree.

She was going to her uncle, when the shower it came on,
She went under a bush, the rain for to shun.
With her apron all around her, I took her for a swan,
And I levelled my gun and I shot Molly Baun.

I ran to her uncle in haste and great fear,
Saying, "Uncle, dear uncle, I've shot Molly dear.
With her apron all around her, I took her for a swan,
Bur oh, alas, it was my own Molly Baun.

'I shot my own true love, alas, I'm undone,
While she was in the shade by the setting of the sun.
If I thought she was there, I'd caress her tenderly,
And soon I'd get married to my own Molly dear.'

My curse on you Toby, that lent me your gun,
To go out a-shooting by the late setting sun.
I rubbed her fair temples, and found she was dead,
A fountain of tears, for my Molly I shed.

Up came her aged father, and his locks they were grey,
Stay here in your own country, and don't run away.
Stay here in your own country 'til your trial it comes on,
And I'll see that you're set free by the laws of the land.'

All the maids in this country they all will be glad
When they hear of the sad news that my Molly is dead.
Take them all in their hundreds, set them all in a row,
Molly Baun she'll shine like a mountain of snow.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Tradsinger
Date: 24 May 16 - 05:16 AM

Here's the version I recorded from Phillis Marks of Glenville, WVA in 1998:

Molly Bender

Molly Bender was out walking when a shower came on
She went under a beach tree the shower to shun

Jimmy Randall was out hunting, it was way after dark
He shot at Molly Bender and he missed not his mark.

He ran up to her with his gun in his hand
And a shower of tears in her bosom he shed.

He run to his uncle with his gun in his hand
Saying 'Uncle, dear uncle, Molly Bender I've slain'.

It was not my intention for to take her sweet life
I intended for to marry and to make her my wife.

His uncle stood at the window, his hair turning grey
Said 'Jimmy, dear Jimmy, oh don't run away.'

Your father has money, your debts he will pay
And the laws of this land will set Jimmy free.'

At the day of his trial, Molly's ghost did appear
Saying, 'Jimmy, oh Jimmy, oh Jimmy go clear.'

It was not your intention for to take my sweet life.'
'I intended for to marry and to make you my wife.'

Molly Bender was a lady, though now dead and gone.
With her apron pinned around her, she was shot for a swan.

Tradsinger


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 09:27 AM

Thanks Tradsinger, you collected some great versions at that late date.

I'm posting some broadsides mentioned by Steve Gardham in the Bramble briar thread:

Steve: "Undoubtedly a northern Irish ballad, Molly Bawn, and there are several late 18thc copies in the BL and ITMA."

Belfast garland 1797 in ITMA 'The Youth's Grievance, or the Downfall of Molly Bawn'. 10sts

Damon and Phillis's Garland. BL 11621. c. 5. 49.4 'A Song called Molly Bawn' 7sts

Robertson, Glasgow, 1799. BL 11606. aa. 23. 24.2 'Mally Bann' 12 sts

Bottle & Friend's Garland nd. BL 11621 c. 3. 4.4 'Molly Bawn' 7 double sts.

No imprint. nd National Library of Scotland. 2346 online. An Admired Song called Young Molly Bawn' 6sts.

As with 'Willie Leonard' I'm inclined to think these northern Irish ballads are based on real events, a little romanticised, probably of the mid 18thc.

Robertson's version starts 'Jamie Randall went a hunting'
Andrews of New York actually tiled his version 'Polly Von Luther and Jamie Randall'.

Steve also mentioned: John Moulden "The Printed Ballad in Ireland: A guide 1760-1920 thesis National University of Ireland, 2006.

Richie

PS I have a copy of "Polly Von Luther and Jamie Randall," dated 1857 which was printed by Andrews out of NYC. I'll post text later.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 10:04 AM

Hi,

Here's an early print version mentioned by Steve-- From My Friend and Pitcher. Lillenhall Library, Belfast, Pamphlet Book 1031, item [9], 1797.

The Youths Grievance; or, the Downfall of MOLLY BAWN.

Come all you young Gallants that follow the Gun
Beware of late shooting at the setting of the sun,
'Tis little you know what has happen'd of late,
Poor Molly Bawn Lowry whose beauty was great.

It hapned one evening in a shower of hail,
This maid in a bower herself did conceal
Her love being a Fowling, shot her in the dark,
Which griev'd him full sore he did not miss his mark.

And when he came there and found it was she,
His limbs they grew feeble his eyes could not see;
He rubb'd her fair temples, but finding her dead,
Then a fountain of tears for his jewel he shed.

His heart being full of sad sorrow and grief,
With his eyes up to heaven imploring for relief;
Crying of all comfort I now take my leave,
And follow my jewel full soon to the grave.

He streight way went home with his gun in his hand,
Quite feeble and weak, and uneable to stand,
Crying my dear Father see what I have done,
I've shot my love Molly at the setting of the Sun.

In yonder green bower my love she sat down,
I shot at my darling, which makes me bemoan;
Her apron being about her, I took her for a fawn
But to my great grief 'twas my Molly Bawn.

Then bespoke his Father whose locks were grey
Dear Son I desire you'll not go away;
Stay in your own country till your tryal comes on,
And you never will die by the laws of the land.

Oh I curse on you Rogers that e'er lent your arms,
To unhappy Rawlings who has done this harm;
To my sad vexation I have killed my darling,
The beauty of Ulster and Star of Kilwarning.

In Lurgan she was born and well educated,
But in curs'd Kilwarning my love was defeated;
'Twas little I thought to do her any harm,
Tho' now in cold jail i[n] grief left forlorn.

A night or two after to her uncle she appear'd,
Crying my dear Uncle let my love be clear'd;
My apron being about me, he mistook me for a Fawn,
So ne'er hang my love, tho' you've lost Molly Bawn.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 10:06 AM

Richie,
If you let me know which of the broadsides are not already online I'll try to get time to post them over the next few days. I'm off to see if I can find the earliest ref to 'fawn'.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 10:15 AM

TY Steve, I already posted the earliest reference to "fawn" I found which was 1857 in the Andrews broadside "Polly Von Luther and Jamie Randall."

Here's another early Garland text, dated c.1780---From The Bottle and Frien'ds Garland. British Library 11621.c.3(4.), printed c.1780.

The Garland was part of the collection of John Bell of Newcastle. It was probably printed by T. Saint of Newcastle around 1780. Saint operated from 1769, when he took over his late employer J. White's printing business, until his death in 1888[?].

A Song, call'd Molly Bawn

I'll tell you a story
And a story of late
Concerning my jewel
Her fortune was great,
She went out in an evening
And the rain it came on,
She went under the bushes
Herself for to screne.

Her love being out fowling
He shot in the dark
And to his misfortune
he did not miss his mark;
With her apron being about her,
he took her for a swan.
But Oh! and alas!
It was sweet Molly Bawn.

When he came to her
And found she was dead
A well full of tears
On his love he did shed,
Crying oh! my dear jewel
My joy and delight
I durst not presume
For to make her my bride.

He went home to his father
With the gun in his hand,
Crying father, dear father
I've shot Molly bawn
For her apron being about her,
And I took her for a swan
But ah, and alas
It was sweet Molly Bawn.

Oh, woe to the tobby[1]
For the lend of thy arms,
For unfortunate Wrangle[2]
has done this great harm
Shot the glory of the North
And the flower of Kiln-wan,
and what shall we do
For the loss of Molly Bawn.

Then up bespoke his Father
With his head growing grey,
Saying Johnny, dear Johnny
Don't run away.
For here in this country,
Your trial shall go on,
By the laws of our Nation,
You won't be condemn'd.

Two or three nights thereafter
To her uncle she did appear,
Saying uncle, dear uncle,
Johnny Wrangle set clear.
For my apron being about me,
And he took me for a swan,
But its ah! and alas
It was me Molly Bawn.

1: [thee Toby]
2: cf 'Randall', the hero's name in some American broadside versions.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 10:22 AM

So far the earliest 'fawn' I can find is in the Belfast printing of 1797 titled 'The Youths Grievance; or, the Downfall of Molly Bawn. 10 sts.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 10:31 AM

I can't emphasise too strongly the importance of the erratic usage of long s, and f, by printers and their compositors. For instance, look at the Andrews NY printing. The word actually says 'sawn'. In other words some of Andrews fs are actually fs but others are the old-fashioned long s and this was in the 1850s.

In normal correct usage the long s lingered on until about 1810, but both the short and long s were both in use together right from the 17th century. Remember we are talking about the very bottom of the printing trade here and they weren't too fussy. The very nadir was arguably attained by Brereton of Dublin.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 10:36 AM

Steve,

The 1797 version I just posted (The Youths Grievance; or, the Downfall of Molly Bawn) has:

My apron being about me, he mistook me for a Fawn,
So ne'er hang my love, tho' you've lost Molly Bawn.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 11:04 AM

It has to be said that the mistaking fawn/swan is just as likely either way.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 11:16 AM

Sharp and the 'Shooting of his dear' title. The previous well-known title was Baring Gould's 'Setting of the sun'. Sharp was perhaps asserting his own influence. It first appears in Sharp's Mss for 1903, not long after he started collecting. The version he recorded from Louie Hooper and Lucy White has the line in the first verse so it may have been the ladies' title or it could just have easily been Sharp's decision to use it. Whatever, Sharp continued to collect many more versions and used that title for all of them regardless of whether they had a similar line in them. The Hooper/White version was published in the Journal for 1905 and it was used in his very influential publications from then on, and a decade later when he came to the Appalachians he continued to use it. By 1906 Gardiner was also using it for his recorded versions in his Mss. This demonstrates just how influential Sharp was. Baring Gould lived out in the sticks so his influence was minimal compared with Sharp's London-based operations. BG only produced one book on FS whereas Sharp produced a great many.

As an adjunct I use that very title in my Master Titles Index as it is simply the one that occurs most in publications.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Brian Peters
Date: 24 May 16 - 11:43 AM

"Sharp continued to collect many more versions and used that title for all of them regardless of whether they had a similar line in them."

I think he was simply aiming for a consistent system - like Roud's - that enabled the comparison of one version with another, regardless of title variation. Though, being Sharp, he used his own title rather than B-G's existing one!


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 12:18 PM

Hi,

So here's Baring Gould's version in Songs of the West (the 1905 edition, for which Cecil Sharp acted as musical editor. What's remarkable is Baring-Gould re-wrote the stanzas - and rather poorly-- keeping only the first and half of the second of the four stanzas he collected from Sam Fone of Mary Tavy in Devon, 1893).

NO. 62 AT THE SETTING OF THE SUN

1. Come all you young fellows that carry a gun,
Beware of late shooting when daylight is done;
For 'tis little you reckon what hazards you run,
I shot my true love at the setting of the sun

CHORUS: In a shower of rain as my darling did hie
All under the bushes to keep herself dry,
With her head in her apron I thought her a swan,
And I shot my true love at the setting of the sun.

[Chorus: In a shower of rain as my darling did run,[1]
All under the bushes a shower to shun,
Her apron about her head, I took her for a swan,
I shot the only maid I loved, at the setting of the sun."]

2. I'll fly from my country, I nowhere find rest
I've shot my true love, like a bird in her nest.
Like lead on my heart lies the deed I have done,[2]
I shot my true love at the setting of the sun.
In a shower, etc.


3. In the night the fair maid as a white swan appears,
She says, O my true love, quick dry up your tears,
I freely forgive you, I have Paradise won,
I was shot by my love at the setting of the sun.
In a shower, etc.

[3. "Oh it's son! dearest son! don't you run away,[3]
Don't leave your own country till the trial I pray
Don't leave your own country till the trial is done,
For shooting of your own love at the setting of the sun."]

4. The years as they pass leave me lonely and sad,
I can ne'er love another, and naught makes me glad.
I wait and expect till life's little span done
I meet my true love at the rising of the sun
In a shower, etc.

[4. In a night to her uncle the fair maid appeared,[4]
Saying, "Uncle, dear uncle of me not be a-feared
As my apron about my head in the rain I did run,
He shot me as a swan, at the setting of the sun."]

1. Actual chorus from his notebook.
2. The last two lines of stanza two were forgotten by Fone. Baring-Gould added these.
3. This is the actual text of stanza 3 as recorded in his notebook.
4. This is the actual text of stanza 4 as recorded in his notebook.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Brian Peters
Date: 24 May 16 - 12:33 PM

Dear me, not exactly an improvement!

And in fact, Sharp's title conveys more of the sense of the tale than does 'The Setting of the Sun'.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 12:55 PM

Hi,

The other question was: Do you think Sharp was making a play on words with the title--dear=deer? I don't think he was and he may not have known the fawn/swan issue.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 01:04 PM

Steve--

A Scottish chapbook published 1793 has a version, the ballads are:

Logie O' Buchan, Mally Bann, Grigel Maccree, The Young Man's Love to the Farmer's Daughter, and The Braes of Ballanden.

I presume it's the Robertson, Glasgow, 1799. BL 11606. aa. 23. 24.2 'Mally Bann' 12 sts that you posted.

If you can scan email or type it out please,

TY

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 01:24 PM

Hi,

The only version I have with the spelling "Mally Bann" was taken from
The New Monthly Magazine and Universal register. Volume 67, 1843. It follows:

MALLY BANN.

1.Jemmy Randall went a shooting,
A shooting in the dark;
But to his great misfortune,
He did not miss his mark.

2. His love's apron being about her,
He took her for a swan;
But alas, and forever, alas!
It was sweet Mally Bann.

3.When he came up into her,
And found that she was dead,
Great abundance of salt tears
For his darling he shed.

4. He went home to his father
With his gun in his hand,
Crying, "Dear father, dear father,
I've shot Mally Bann."

5. His father looked upon him
(His hair being gray)
Crying, " Oh! my dearest son,
You must not run away:

6. "Stay at home in your own country—
Let your trial come on;
By the laws of sweet Ireland,
You shall never be undone."

7. Within two or three months after,
To her uncle appeared she,
Crying " Dear uncle, dear uncle,
Let Jemmy Randall go free.

8. "For my apron being about me,
He took me for a swan."
But it is, oh! and for ever, alas!
It was sweet Mally Bann.

9. When the fair maids in the city
Were assembled in a row,
She appeared among them
Like a mountain of snow.

10. All the maidens in the country—
They held up their head,
When this beautiful, this lovely,
This fair one was dead.

Steve- please compare to this version before scanning. I do have a question about the 'mountain of snow" in stanza 9 and many versions. What does that mean? I thought it was her ghost :)

Richie

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 02:05 PM

Yes, the two texts are very close.
I'll flag up the differences.

1
Jamie Randal went a hunting
a hunting in the dark....
3
We came unto her....
7.2
to her uncle she appear'd....
let Jamie Randal go free.
9
All the Maidens in the country,
they are all very glad,
That this beautiful; this lovely,
this fair one was dead.
10
She was the flower of all the nation,
the flower of Colrain;
The flower of all the nation
was sweet Mally Bann
11
When the fair Maids in the city,
were assembled in a row,
She appeared amongst them
like a mountain of snow.
12
The flower of all the nation,
the flower of Colrain
The flower of all the nation
was sweet Mally Bann.

BL 11606 aa 23 (24) J & M Robertson, Glasgow, 1799. Item 2 on garland.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 May 16 - 02:17 PM

'Mountain of snow.'
No ghost (IMO) It's simply a clumsy figurative way of saying when she was alive she was more beautiful than all of the others, or perhaps more pure/virginal (but perhaps that's stretching it). These hedge poets had read classics and could imitate passingly the stuff in the pleasure gardens but some of their ideas were sometimes a bit OTT.

Unfortunately I didn't note down all of the other songs in the Robertson garland but it wasn't the same as your 1793 one as the fourth song was 'Johnny Faa, The Gypsy laddie'.

Where did you get the 1793 version reference from?

Sharp, play on words. I very much doubt it. As I said those words actually appear in the song, and it is highly unlikely Sharp was aware of the Fawn version. His own collection of broadsides mainly consists of 19thc ones, and he wasn't a burrower in the BL like Baring Gould.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 02:28 PM

This is one of the broadsides Steve listed of which I've found three printings and there may be more. I've also found a different version titled "Young Molly Bawn." Here are the three sources. The date is circa 1850s. The unusual line is: "My curses on you Toby" whatever that name(?) means.

1) An Admred Song called Young Molly Bawn --Crawford.EB.1875 [Dublin? : s.n., ca. 1860?] National Library
Other title: Rocking the cradle.

2) Imprint Names: Nugent, J.F. & Co. (Bodleian

3) An admired Song called YOUNG Molly Bawn; single sheet with Breennan on the Moor (Bodleian)

An admred [sic] Song called YOUNG Molly Bawn.

Come all you young fellows that follow the gun,
Beware of late shooting by the setting of the sun,
Her white apron about her I took her for a swan
But to my misfortune it was my Molly Bawn.

He ran to his uncle with the gun in his hand
Saying Uncle, dear Uncle I'm not able to stand,
I've a story to tell you which happened of late
I have lovely Moly Bawn and her beauty was great.

Up comes his father and his locks they were gray,
Stay in your own country and don't run away,
Stay in your own country till your trial comes on,
And I'll see you free by the laws of the land.

My curses on you Toby that lent me your gun
To go a state shooting by the setting of the sun
I robbed[sic] her fair temples and found she was dead
A fountain of tears for my Molly I shed.

I shot my own true lover— alas? I'm undone
While she was in the shade by the setting of the sun
Ah, if I thought she was there I'd caress her tenderly,
And soon I'd get marred to my own dear Molly.

Young women dont[sic] be jesting when your love is sincere,
For if you do they can't love yon or e'er as you care,
You'll know by a young man's conduct, when he's gentle and bland
[T]hat he'll give you his heart and also hi[s] hand.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 03:06 PM

Hi Steve,

This must be the chapbook you have (dated 1799-1803)
The British volunteers. To which are added, God save the king. Mally Bann. Tippling John. Johny Faa, the gypsie laddie.
Printed by J. & M. Robertson, Saltmarket (Glasgow)

The 1793 chapbook was located on Google books:

https://books.google.com/books?id=lAhNngEACAAJ&dq=%22Mally+Bann%22&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiIytzVs_PMAhWCmR4KHYPYBZgQ6AEIJjAA

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 03:42 PM

Hi,

Here's another take on the "mountain of snow" from: The Irish Origins and Variations of the Ballad "Molly Bawn" by Jennifer J O'Connor

During this time, Molly's ghost became more ethereal (changing from the form of a swan to a "mountain of snow")

The entire article is on my site: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/irish-origins-and-var-of-the-ballad-molly-brown.aspx

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 24 May 16 - 04:12 PM

Richie,
> Also Richard Mellish: Where can I find: Ulster Folklife 1845 ? And is that date correct? Is Molly Bawn found in --"Some Songs and Ballads in Use in the Province of Ulster, 1845"?

Dunno. I just copied that from the notes that Bob circulated after that evening's chat, but I'm asking him about it.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 24 May 16 - 04:33 PM

I'm in the middle of reading the Jennifer J O'Connor paper: thank you for putting that on your site.

One statement jumped right out at me: "Although swans are still found in the west of Ireland, they are grey not white". To the best of my belief there are only three species of swans in the British Isles and all of them are white.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 24 May 16 - 08:37 PM

TY Richard Mellish - hope we can get more information. The shooting accident would need to take place before about 1765 (Google books). According to Hugh Shields, Irish poet Pat Reynolds claimed to be kin to the "fowler". I haven't seen any similar report online.

One part of the story I can't figure out is:

Jamie Reynolds goes home to his father and tells him about the shooting and his father advises him not to run but stay in "his ain country."

Then Molly's ghost appears to her uncle. Who is her uncle? They aren't married and this seems to me it should be his father instead of her uncle. Just wondering?

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 25 May 16 - 05:01 AM

Bob Askew has replied, referring to more detailed refs from Malcolm Douglas in Marrowbones.

He says

> It seems my notes were a simplication. The date of the extract, not of Ulster Folklife! Sorry about this!

> The actual sentence is: "Hugh Shields, 'Some songs and ballads in use in the Province of Ulster....1845' (Ulster Folklife 17, 1971, 3-24') describes an MS example from Kilwarlin...... "
So it would seem it is in 'Some songs etc.

Sorry for my contribution to the confusion.

Richard


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: GUEST,Martin Ryan
Date: 25 May 16 - 06:51 AM

Yes - Mute, Whooper and Bewick's Swans are all white as adults. Cygnets are grey and we get the occasional exotic escape. That's our lot.

Regards


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 25 May 16 - 12:01 PM

Hi,

Thanks Richard. Is there a date of the shooting accident that goes along with the names?

I believe that Moore's song "Come Rest in this Bosom," which uses the old harp-melody of "Lough Sheeling" is based on Molly Bawn.

COME, REST IN THIS BOSOM.

Come, rest in this bosom, my own stricken deer,
Tho' the herd have fled from thee, thy home is still here:
Here still is the smile that no cloud can o'ercast,
And a heart and a hand all thy own to the last.

Oh! what was love made for, if 'tis not the same
Thro' joy and thro' torment, thro' glory and shame?
I know not, I ask not, if guilt's in that heart,
I but know that I love thee, whatever thou art.

Thou hast call'd me thy Angel in moments of bliss,
And thy Angel I'll be, 'mid the horrors of this, —
Thro' the furnace, unshrinking, thy steps to pursue,
And shield thee, and save thee, or perish there too!

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 25 May 16 - 02:13 PM

Hi,

The Bottle and Frien'ds Garland, Containing Four Excellent New Songs; is dated 1765 and was published by J. White in Newcastle. Therefore the shooting would probably have taken place between 1750-1760.

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 May 16 - 03:00 PM

I'd be wary of the 1765 date. Where did you get it? The garland has no imprint and could have been printed by Saint. I have a more likely date of about 1788. Read the note added to these garlands by John Bell. He actually states some were printed by White and some by his successor Saint.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 May 16 - 03:10 PM

Besides the earliest extant version of a ballad that has long been in print only tells us the ballad originated 'some time' before that printing. Some have suggested 17th century. I'd go somewhere in between and say second quarter of 18thc, but these are wild guesses. I think if it had happened say c1770 there would be records and even newspaper reports.

Regarding Moore, there are several art songs called 'Molly Bawn' and one of these is more likely to have had an influence on Moore.

Uncle/father. You've really got me confused here, Richie. Why shouldn't it be her Uncle, probably her guardian or a very influential member of her family? He may have been the leading figure in prosecuting Jamie.

It would seem his father was very confident in his story being believed, but until we can find some proper background info we are fishing in the dark.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 25 May 16 - 03:13 PM

Hi,

The earliest US broadside I've found is Boston, 1810:

"Polly Wand, together with the Beggar girl, and Tom Starboard," Isaiah Thomas Broadside Ballads Project,

Polly Wand

Come all you brave shooters that follow the gun,
Beware of your shooting by the setting of the sun,
It was a doleful thing that happen'd of late,
It was Polly Wand whose fortune was great.

Eventually I'll post the rest,

Richie


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 May 16 - 03:56 PM

Look forward to it, Richie.


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Subject: RE: DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn)
From: Richie
Date: 25 May 16 - 04:01 PM

Hi,

This is the full transcription of Polly Wand. The role of the uncle become clear in this version. She meets him at the trial. It's her testimony to her uncle that frees Jemmy. To me her uncle acts like he is acting as a representative on her behalf. Whatever his role, her uncle is at the trial.

"Polly Wand, together with the Beggar girl, and Tom Starboard," Isaiah Thomas Broadside Ballads Project, BIB ID: 284426.

Polly Wand- c. 1810, Boston, MA

Come all you brave shooters that follow the gun,
Beware of your shooting by the setting of the sun,
It was a doleful thing that happen'd of late,
It was Polly Wand whose fortune was great.

As Polly was walking by the setting of the sun,
She stept under a green branch the shower to shun
As he true love was hunting he shot in the dark,
Alas, and alas! Polly Wand was his mark.

And when he came to her and found it was she,
His joints they were weak and his eyes could scarce see,
In his arms he embraced her till he found she was dead
A fountain of tears for his true love he shed.

Then he ran home with his gun in his hand,
Saying daddy dear daddy I have shot Polly Wand,
I shot the fair female the bloom of my life,
For I always intended to make her my wife.

In two or three days after, Polly Wand did appear,
Crying Jemmy, dearest Jemmy, you have nothing to fear,
Stay in your country till your trial comes on,
You shall not be condemned by the laws of the land.

In the height of his trial Polly Wand did appear,
Crying Uncle dear uncle Jemmy Rander must be clear
For I'd my apron about me when he shot me for a swan,
Alas, and alas! it was I, Polly Wand.

There were fourteen of them, all fitting in a row,
Polly Wand in the middle like a mountain of snow,
For I'd my apron about me when he shot me for a swan,
Alas, and alas! it was I, Polly Wand.


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